Poteet restaurant delivers free meals daily to help those in need during virus pandemic

‘We’ll be right at 200 (meals) today with breakfast and lunch.’

Poteet, Texas – The good deeds throughout the region to help those negatively impacted by COVID-19 continue.

Owners Jackie and Mike Campbell, of Poteet Music Pavillion and Grill in the outskirts of Poteet, Texas, have been working extra hours and pulling money out of their own pockets to serve hundreds of free meals.

Twice a day, staff member Stephanie Prichard posts the menu on the restaurant’s Facebook page.

“Good morning, my Poteet community,” Prichard wrote. “Breakfast is being served.” Saturday’s breakfast is biscuits and gravy. “Then, at the end (of the post) I post, ‘God bless’ because God has blessed us all, all throughout this.”

Twice a day, staff member Stephanie Prichard posts the free meal on the restaurant’s Facebook page. "At the end (of the post) I post, ‘God bless’ because God has blessed us all through all throughout this," Prichard said. (Facebook)

Duties at the Poteet Music Pavillion and Grill shifted dramatically more than a month ago.

Jackie was notified of the emergency order to close businesses to help stop the spread of COVID-19 while she was working at the Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show and Rodeo in Mercedes, Texas. Soon after, it was also announced that the Poteet Strawberry Festival would also be canceled.

The Campbells depend greatly on the sales made during the local festival.

Poteet Strawberry Festival postponed; new dates are Oct. 30-Nov. 1

“(We knew there were) going to be people that can't get the food that they need (and) some children only get to eat when they're at school,” Prichard said.

Although the events they greatly depend on for income were canceled, they had enough inventory to feed hundreds. Prichard then pitched the idea of free meals and soon The Poteet Music Pavillion and Grill was delivering hundreds of meals a day.

Poteet Strawberry Festival selling strawberries drive-thru style amid COVID-19 outbreak

“I think we started with just maybe a handful, five or 10 (people),” Jackie said. “We put the word out and then it just grew from there. We’ll be right at 200 (meals) today with breakfast and lunch.”

According to the Jackie, a few weeks ago they began to see a decrease in demand.

“I think a lot of them got their stimulus checks,” she said. “They actually call and say, ‘Take me off the delivery list for a while because we’re okay.'"

Hundreds of meals later, they now depend greatly on donations in order to continue with their free services.

“All the money is for the small stuff people don’t see, like propane gas, dish soap, bleach, gloves,” Jackie said. “You don’t even realize you’re using them until you go to grab the last one.”

Saturday morning, the entire staff witnessed when a man ran out of his truck toward Jackie and handed her an envelope.

“He said, ’It has been a long time, but this is for you,’ and he dropped off a donation of $100,” Jackie said.

During KSAT’s Good Morning San Antonio broadcast, a viewer named Pat Hays called Prichard to donate $1,000 via SquareUp.

“My family, (along with my company) eXp Realty, wanted to donate to help feed families in Poteet,” Hays said.

During KSAT’s Good Morning San Antonio broadcast, a viewer named Pat Hays called the Poteet Music Pavillion and Grill to donate $1,000 via SquareUp in order to help continue feeding families in Poteet. (Credit: Laura Squire Photography) (Laura Squire Photography)
The Hays Family with eXp Realty donated $1,000 via SquareUp to Poteet Music Pavillion and Grill to help feed families in Poteet. (Pat Hays)

Prichard said she was stunned at the amount and overcome with gratitude. It’s a feeling she gets any time someone wants to chip in.

“I get chills,” Prichard said. “I get chills when people really are trying to step up and help the community.”

“I’m amazed,” Jackie said. “I’m grateful.”

With the help of her staff, Jackie keeps a record of every donation in a notebook. All receipts of expenses are also kept safe for their records and will serve as a reminder all the families they have helped get through COVID-19.

To help the Poteet Music Pavillion and Grill continue serving warm meals to families in need, dial 210-440-9386 or visit its Facebook page here.


About the Authors:

Alicia Barrera is a KSAT 12 News reporter and anchor. She is also a co-host of the streaming show KSAT News Now. Alicia is a first-generation Mexican-American, fluent in both Spanish and English with a bachelor's degree from Our Lady of the Lake University. She enjoys reading books, traveling solo across Mexico and spending time with family.